144 user 83 critic

The Misfits (1961)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance, Western | 1 February 1961 (USA)
1:35 | Trailer
A divorcée falls for an over-the-hill cowboy who is struggling to maintain his romantically independent lifestyle.


John Huston


Arthur Miller (screenplay)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Clark Gable ... Gay Langland
Marilyn Monroe ... Roslyn Taber
Montgomery Clift ... Perce Howland
Thelma Ritter ... Isabelle Steers
Eli Wallach ... Guido
James Barton ... Fletcher's Grandfather
Kevin McCarthy ... Raymond Taber
Estelle Winwood ... Church Lady Collecting Money in Bar


Depressed divorcèe, Roslyn Tabor (Monroe), and Gay Langland (Gable), an aging ex-cowboy, who survives by rounding up and catching mustangs (and selling them to slaughterhouses). Wallach plays Guido, Langland's pilot partner, and Clift plays Perce Howland, a drifter rodeo rider. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It shouts and sings with life ... explodes with love! See more »


Drama | Romance | Western


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The film provided the punk band The Misfits with their name. See more »


When Gable, Monroe, and Clift look at the horses in the distance with the binoculars, all three of them hold the binoculars upside down (but they still work, of course). See more »


[first lines]
Isabelle Steers: Young man, do you have the time? I got six clocks in the house and none of them work.
Guido: Twenty after nine.
Isabelle Steers: After? It's twenty after, dear. Dahlin'. Five minutes.
Roslyn: What about you?
Isabelle Steers: I'm all set, I just tyin' my sling. The lawyer said nine thirty sharp, dahlin'.
Roslyn: Okay.
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown on and around puzzle pieces. See more »


Referenced in Norma Jean & Marilyn (1996) See more »

User Reviews

Despair and a glimmer of hope served up by legends
30 November 2013 | by jjnxn-1See all my reviews

This movie is about despair. Despair at the passing of a way of life. Despair at disappointed hopes and dreams. Despair at the loss of a loved one, either through death, divorce or disinterest. Knowing that going in and if you don't mind downbeat films there are some really moving performances from a cast full of legends.

Heavy with gloom there is still much too admire though Miller's prose is at times heavy and tending towards pretension. Marilyn's woozy sexuality coming through a haze of pills and booze at times still suits her character's searching and displaced loneliness.

Clark Gable accepted his part after first choice Robert Mitchum passed. Mitchum would have been great of course and publicly stated he regretted not taking the role since he and Marilyn were longtime friends, before both were famous he had worked with her first husband, and he felt that around him she would have been able to pull herself together as she had on River of No Return. This was the end of the line for Gable and his weathered appearance and weariness actually suits the role better than Mitchum's ruggedness would have at that point. The film contains some of the best acting Clark ever did.

Clift and his sad broken looks make a powerful impact and Wallach scores well too but the great Thelma Ritter is somewhat shortchanged since she disappears about halfway through the picture. Her astringent tartness would have been most welcome later in the film when the real heavy going takes place.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

1 February 1961 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Misfits See more »


Box Office


$4,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Seven Arts Productions See more »
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Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

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